It was only a matter of time until one of the most unusual sports stories of the year was made into a documentary series, and now Kevin Hart’s HartBeat Productions, Complex Networks, Klutch Originals, and Haven Entertainment are making it happen.
The saga of the Bishop Sycamore High School football team will now find itself as a docuseries, after the “fake” Columbus, Ohio high school team made its way to ESPN and got sports fans talking last month. The tale didn’t end there, as attention on the team quickly turned to arrest records, concerns surrounding students’ ages, and the school’s origins.
“As soon as I started following this story, I was immediately drawn to it and knew it was something that myself and my team at HartBeat had to dive into,” Hart stated. “HBP thrives in the doc-series space. We understand how to break down stories and capture the most interesting and honest moments in a narrative. We know this con comes with a robust backstory and cannot wait to share it with the world.”
While the docuseries aims to observe “how the school and this game fooled the world and became front page news,” according to a release, an additonal scripted adaptation will also be in the works.
“The story of Bishop Sycamore has quickly become one of the most unique roller coaster plots sports has ever seen. Our extensive research and interviews about the program have revealed alleged dark secrets and details that have put Complex at the forefront of this coverage and global conversation,” said Complex editor Zion Olojede. “I’m excited for us to be able to share and tell the full story in ways that no other company can, and in the incredible company of partners like HartBeat Productions, Klutch Originals, and Haven Entertainment.”
Olojede’s reporting on the topic has included an interview with a former player from Bishop Sycamore and an additional conversation with two players on the 2020 team about since-removed head coach Roy Johnson.
“When the news first broke, it became clear to me that this side of the amateur athletics landscape needs to be more deeply discussed and explored, and I’m thrilled that HartBeat, Complex and Haven Entertainment share Klutch Original’s passion for telling important and timely sports stories,” said Rich Paul, CEO and founder of Klutch Sports Group and Head of United Talent (UTA) Sports.